A 15-year-old showjumping star from North Lincolnshire has beaten off tough competition to be selected to compete for Great Britain in the under-16s Nations Cup next month.
Holly Truelove from Worlaby, near Brigg is one of four showjumpers from across the United Kingdom to have been selected by British Showjumping.
The competition, which pits European showjumping teams of five riders against each other, will take place in Opglabbeek, Belgium from 4th to 7th April.
The selection process is notoriously competitive with numerous showjumpers competing for a LeMieux Team GB place in the Nations Cup, but Holly managed to secure her position after several top 10 finishes in multiple competitions over the last 12 months. This includes reaching the finals of the World Cup Pony Show in Belgium last December.
Commenting on her selection, Holly said: “I’m ecstatic that my pony and I have been selected. It’s always a real honour to compete for your country; I’m really looking forward to it and hope to do myself proud.
“I would like to thank my trainer Rachel Williams for her guidance, title sponsors LeMieux for their continued support and my sponsors Truelove Property and Top Crop Haylage.”
Holly will compete on her stallion Rexter D’or – a Connemara cross Selle Français grey pony – which she has been riding for the last year.
As well as competing all year round, Holly is currently studying for her GCSEs at Hull Collegiate School, which Holly says has been extremely understanding and a great support throughout the process. Holly plans to stay on to study for her A-levels.
Barrie Truelove, Holly’s father and a Director of Truelove Property, will join Holly in making the 400-mile trip to Belgium next month.
“We are really thrilled for Holly. This selection is a true testament to her hard work, which we are fortunate enough to witness every day,” said Barrie.
“Anyone in showjumping will tell you that being selected for Team GB is no mean feat. The showjumping circuit is extremely competitive, and only the very best get chosen.
“As well as juggling her school work, she is still consistently finishing high in competitions, which just goes to show her talent for the sport. Holly is a fantastically gifted horse woman and has a real bond with the pony, which will stand her in good stead next month.”
This is not the first time Holly has been selected for Team GB. She was one of six riders to compete in the Children section of the British Showjumping Team NAF Youth Squads at the 2017 Opglabbeek Nations Cups. Holly was also selected for Great Britain at the 2017 European Showjumping Championships in the children on horses category.
Rob Unsworth, owner of Top Crop, commented: “Our congratulations to Holly. It’s a pleasure to support her and provide Rexter D’or with top-quality feed.”